What is the bottom part of a laptop called?

The bottom part of a laptop is a crucial component that serves several important functions. In this article, we will refer to the bottom section of the laptop as the base or bottom panel. We will cover the different names used to describe the laptop base, its key components and functions, how the design affects performance and usability, customization and repair options, common problems, and alternatives to the standard laptop base.


The bottom plastic outer shell of a laptop is typically referred to by several common names including:

  • Base
  • Bottom panel
  • Bottom case
  • Underside
  • Bottom chassis

These names all refer to the same part – the plastic casing on the bottom of the laptop that houses internal components like the battery, hard drive, RAM, wireless card, cooling system, and motherboard. This shell snaps or screws into the top section of the laptop, commonly called the top case or upper chassis, to fully enclose all the working parts of the computer.

According to Drivesavers Data Recovery, “The base panel is one of the lesser-known laptop part names. This laptop component houses the essential parts of the computer.” (https://drivesaversdatarecovery.com/laptop-part-names/)


The main components located in the bottom of a laptop include the motherboard, RAM, CPU, heat sinks, fans, ports, battery, speakers, and SSD.

The motherboard is the main printed circuit board inside a laptop and holds many of the crucial components like the CPU, RAM, connectors for ports, etc. It allows all the parts to communicate with each other.

RAM, or random access memory, stores data temporarily for quick access by the CPU. More RAM allows the computer to work faster.

The CPU, or central processing unit, executes instructions and runs programs on the laptop. Faster CPUs allow for quicker performance.

Heat sinks and fans help keep the laptop components cool during operation. The bottom of a laptop often has vents to allow airflow for cooling.

Ports like USB, HDMI, ethernet, etc. allow connection of peripherals and transfer of data. These ports are connected to the motherboard.

The battery provides power when not plugged in. Batteries can be removed or integrated into the laptop bottom.

Speakers provide audio output and are often located on the bottom edges of the laptop base.

SSDs, or solid state drives, are a type of high-speed storage replacing traditional hard drives. The SSD is often accessible from the bottom panel for upgrades.


The bottom panel of a laptop, often called the base panel or bottom cover, serves several important functions:

Houses internal components: The base panel provides a housing and mounting location for many of the laptop’s internal parts like the motherboard, RAM, hard drive, cooling fan, and optical drive. It holds these components securely in place inside the laptop chassis.

Provides access: The base panel must be removed to access the internal components for upgrades, repairs, cleaning, or maintenance. It provides an entry point to the laptop’s guts.

Transfers heat: Vents in the bottom panel allow for airflow which helps transfer heat away from internal components like the processor and graphics card. This airflow is crucial for cooling the laptop and preventing overheating.

Holds battery in place: The battery attaches directly to the base panel. When the base panel is removed, the battery can be taken out.

Contains ports/connectivity: Openings in the base panel allow access to ports like USB, HDMI, ethernet, and more. These ports on the bottom provide connectivity options when using the laptop.


The bottom panel of a laptop, sometimes referred to as the bottom cover or bottom case, plays an important role in the laptop’s design. It is typically made of plastic, metal, or carbon fiber material (1). Laptop manufacturers choose the bottom panel material based on factors like weight, durability, thermal performance, and aesthetics.

Some laptops feature a removable bottom panel, while others have a sealed, unibody construction. Removable panels allow convenient access to internal components for upgrades and repairs. They are held in place by screws and snap clips. Sealed bottom panels cannot be removed without prying open the laptop, making upgrades difficult (2).

The bottom panel contains ventilation holes or vents to allow airflow and cooling of internal components. The layout of vents depends on the positioning of heat-generating parts like the processor and graphics card inside the laptop. Most bottom panels also have four rubberized feet to raise the laptop off flat surfaces for better airflow.

The bottom panel also contains screw holes for accessing internal parts, regulatory information labels, product identification labels like the serial number sticker, and openings for connectivity ports if any are located on that side of the laptop.

(1) https://www.ebay.com/b/Laptop-Bottom-Case-Housings/175676/bn_649445
(2) https://www.toastmade.com/products/laptop-bottom-cover-wood.html


One of the great benefits of the bottom panel of a laptop is the ability to customize its appearance. Many manufacturers sell replaceable bottom panels in different colors and designs, allowing users to change the look of their laptop with just a simple swap. Companies like Alibaba offer a wide range of custom laptop housing options to suit various models.

Besides aesthetics, the bottom panel can also be customized for cooling purposes. Upgrading to a panel with more ventilation holes or switching to a lightweight mesh material can help increase airflow and keep the laptop’s internal components cooler. Custom cooling panels are a great option for gaming laptops or systems used for demanding tasks like video editing that generate a lot of heat. With some DIY skills, enthusiasts can mod their own laptop bottom panel for better cooling, like adding more heat pipes or high-RPM fans.


Removing the bottom panel of a laptop safely is an important first step for many repair and upgrade procedures. According to the Framework service guide (1), the steps are:

  1. Shut down the laptop
  2. Unplug the power cord
  3. Remove any expansion cards
  4. Unscrew the case screws, usually located under rubber feet
  5. Carefully pry up the edges of the bottom panel and lift it off

Once inside, two common upgrades are installing more RAM and swapping the solid state drive (SSD). RAM slots and SSD bay locations vary by model. Refer to teardown guides for exact locations. When upgrading, be sure to use compatible components and follow anti-static precautions.

Replacing the battery also requires removing the bottom panel. Batteries are often secured with screws and/or adhesive strips. Unplugging the old battery’s connector and installing the new battery’s connector completes the swap. Re-assemble in the reverse order.

(1) https://guides.frame.work/Guide/Bottom+Cover+Replacement+Guide/107

Common Issues

Some of the most common issues that can occur with the bottom panel of a laptop include:

Cracked bottom panels – The bottom panel is often made of plastic and can crack if the laptop is dropped or impacted. Cracks can allow dirt and debris inside the laptop and can be difficult to repair properly.

Worn rubber feet – Most laptops have small rubber feet on the bottom panel to raise it slightly and prevent slipping on surfaces. These feet wear down over time and need to be replaced.

Blocked air vents – Many crucial air vents are located on the bottom panel that allow airflow to cool internal components. Dust buildup can block these vents leading to overheating.

Loose panels – The plastic clips and screws that hold the bottom panel in place can become loose over time, especially if opened regularly for upgrades. This can allow the panel to rattle or fall off.

According to discussion forums like Reddit, loose bottom panels are a fairly common annoyance that can often be fixed by tightening screws or replacing plastic clips.


While most laptops come with a standard bottom panel design from the manufacturer, there are some alternative products that can enhance or change the functionality of the bottom panel.

One popular category is laptop cooling pads. These are raised stands with built-in fans that you place your laptop on top of. Cooling pads help improve airflow and keep your laptop’s temperature lower during intensive tasks like gaming or video editing. Popular brands for cooling pads include HAVIT, Cooler Master, and Tree New Bee.

Another category is laptop stands, which raise your laptop for improved ergonomics without built-in fans. These help tilt the keyboard at an angle for more comfortable typing. Popular brands include Soundance and Lamicall.

Some other alternatives that connect externally to the bottom of a laptop include external battery packs to extend battery life, external GPU enclosures to upgrade graphics capabilities, and docking stations that provide additional ports and connectivity.


The bottom part of a laptop is known by several common names like base panel or bottom cover. It is an important component that houses internal parts and allows access for repairs and upgrades. Understanding its design and function provides insight into the laptop’s inner workings.

Key takeaways include the bottom panel’s role in protecting internal components, facilitating cooling, and allowing customization. Careful handling when removing or replacing it is needed to avoid damage. Being aware of potential issues like warping or loose screws allows preventative action.

In summary, the base panel is an integral but often overlooked laptop component. While out of sight, its thoughtful engineering keeps the machine running. With care and maintenance, it enables the laptop to function optimally.